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To Be Frank: Sinatra at 100 – Ten Things You May Not Know About Frank Sinatra

23 December 2015

"To Be Frank: Sinatra At 100" is the story of the man behind the music and his enormous impact upon popular culture.

12 December 2015: The 100th anniversary of the birth of Frank Sinatra. Frank needs no introduction, of course. There are very few people who wouldn't recognise his name. His music is renowned world-wide and his voice was so unique he was known simply as "The Voice". This documentary film focuses on the man himself and the legacy he left. Director Simon Napier-Bell takes a revealing look at the man behind the music. The film has exclusive interviews with some of those who knew him best. An all star cast of contributors including Tony 'O', his manager and close friend and Sir Tim Rice, Louis Walsh, Frank Warren, Alice Cooper and Paul Gambaccini spill the beans and cover things that have never previously been covered.

Exclusive interviews with Tony 'O' Oppedisano (Sinatra's close friend, confidante and personal manager), Sir Tim Rice, Louis Walsh, Frank Warren, Alice Cooper, Paul Gambaccini and other significant celebrities of stage and screen.



Director Simon Napier-Bell is best known for being a rock manager, his record-producing and the books he has written. He's managed artists including The Yardbirds, Marc Bolan, T Rex, Japan, Asia, CC Catch, Ultravox, Candi Staton, Boney M, and Wham! In the 1960s he co-wrote the hit song "You Don't Have To Say You Love Me" and has written a number of best-selling books about the music industry. In this fond reflection on the life of Sinatra, he reveals stories that have not previously been told.

On Saturday 12th December, Frank Sinatra would have celebrated his 100th birthday.

To celebrate the release of documentary To Be Frank: Sinatra At 100, which is available on digital download now, we reveal ten things you might not know about the legend that is Frank Sinatra.




1. He almost didn’t make it
When Frank was born on December 12, 1915 he was initially thought to be stillborn. While the doctor attended to his sick mother, his grandmother Rose held baby Frank under running water until he started to breathe.




2. Frank wasn’t supposed to be his name
He was supposed to be named Martin after his father but a mishap at his christening meant that the priest read out his godfather Frank’s name instead of his intended name. Frank’s mother believed the mistake to be a good omen and decided to keep the name.




3. In the beginning, fans were paid to scream
Hard to believe now given his popularity, but at the beginning of his career Frank’s publicist held auditions to find the best female screamers. They were each paid $5 to watch the star perform and scream encouragingly from the side lines.




4. He couldn’t read music
Despite being one of the most famous recording artists in history, Frank was unable to read music. Instead, he relied solely on the use of his ears to follow the sounds of notes and wrote and played music from his own instincts.




5. He loved cheese
One of his favourite foods was grilled cheese and it is said that a grilled cheese sandwich was the last thing he ate before he died.




6. He couldn’t stand Marlon Brando
Frank wasn’t a fan of The Godfather actor referring to him as “Mumbles” and “the world’s most overrated actor.”




7. He helped name Scooby Doo
Inspired by the lyric ‘dooby doo’ in Sinatra’s Strangers in the Night, CBS executive Fred Silverman decided to rename the famous pooch Scooby Doo. He was originally intended to be called Too Much.




8. Never call him the “Chairman of the board”
Chairman of the Board was a nickname he acquired while he served as president of Reprise Records, and according to his third wife Barbara, he hated it.




9. His last performance was of ‘The Best is Yet to Come’
The last song Frank ever performed live was ‘The Best is Yet to Come.’ He performed the song to a group of 1200 people on the last night of a golf tournament named for him, this was back in February 1995, three years before his death.




10. He was buried with all of his favourite things
When Frank died of a heart attack in May of 1998 he was buried with a number of his favourite things. A bottle of his favourite tipple Jack Daniel’s, cigarettes and a Zippo lighter all joined old blue eyes when he was laid to rest on May 20.


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